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Comment: Re:Uhh, sounds like a tax to me... (Score 1) 401

by floofyscorp (#41967723) Attached to: Wayback Machine Trumps FOI Tribunal
They generally send most unlicensed properties(especially in student-heavy areas, as students tend to be bad at paying for licenses/stupid enough to pay when they don't need to) a series of increasingly unfriendly letters suggesting they get a license, as well as the occasional 'enforcement officer' who looks disturbingly like a police officer. I think you can be fined for watching TV without a license, but how they'd prove it I have no idea.

Comment: Re:Not according to my British friends. (Score 1) 401

by floofyscorp (#41967677) Attached to: Wayback Machine Trumps FOI Tribunal
I've never heard of a phone contract in the UK that limits incoming minutes... He is right that they tend to be extremely suspicious of people claiming not to need a license though. When I was a student I had a TV for playing games and watching DVDs on, and got harassed on the regular by the TV licensing heavies. And by heavies, I mean they literally sent a huge enforcement officer to our door once, demanding to be let in to inspect our property. I politely told him to fuck off because he had no right of entry and I had informed them time and again that we were within our rights not to have a license. We still got the threatening letters after that, but no more unfriendly faces at the door.
Data Storage

+ - Five-dimensional glass disc storage->

Submitted by
MrSeb
MrSeb writes "Researchers from the University of Southampton, England, have successfully recorded, read, and erased data from a clear piece of nano-structured glass. This technique could revolutionize microscopy in general, and medical imaging in specific — and, perhaps more importantly for computing, it could also be used to store binary data, like an optical disc. Beyond the standard three dimensions that are used by optical disc storage — vertical and horizontal positions on the piece of glass, and varying depths — wavelength and polarization can also be used to carry data. Ta'da, five dimensions."
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Crime

+ - Facebook helps trace laptop looter-> 1

Submitted by DaveAtWorkAnnoyingly
DaveAtWorkAnnoyingly (655625) writes "A former NASA and FBI employee had had his laptop stolen during the recent looting and rioting in Britain. However, being an IT security professional, he had installed a tracking device into it so he sat, patiently waiting for his computer to phone home. "After two hours of watching him surf religious revelation videos, shopping for Mercedes A class on Autotrader he finally popped onto Facebook!". He said the information included the man's name, school, address in west London and information about his wireless internet. After he handed the details over to police, they raided the man's flat and recovered the laptop."
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GNU is Not Unix

Stallman On the State of Free Software 25 Years On 367

Posted by Soulskill
from the industry-of-free dept.
TRNick writes "What's the state of free software, 25 years after GNU's birth? TechRadar has an interview with Richard Stallman to find out. Stallman thinks free software is making good progress: 'Nowadays hardware developers are also increasingly likely to publish the interface specs so that we can develop free software that works with the hardware. Perhaps we are turning the corner, but we still have a big fight on our hands before all computer users have freedom.' But how many of us actually run an operating system that Richard Stallman would consider free? Many of the more popular GNU/Linux distributions, including Mandriva and Ubuntu, bundle proprietary code with their free software packages. Perhaps free software has reached a large enough install base that companies are happy to use it for their own gain, but aren't quite so willing to make their own commitments to free software development. How important this is to the success of free software depends on how strong your stance is on freedom is."
The Internet

FCC To investigate Comcast Bittorrent Meddling 196

Posted by kdawson
from the just-the-bits-please dept.
An anonymous reader writes "FCC Chairman Kevin Martin said Tuesday that the commission will investigate complaints that Comcast actively interferes with Internet traffic as its subscribers try to share files online. A coalition of consumer groups and legal scholars asked the agency in November to stop Comcast from discriminating against certain types of data and to fine Comcast $195,000 for every affected subscriber. While known for months in tech circles, the issue wasn't given broad attention until an Associated Press report last year, in which reporters tested and verified the data blocking."
Media

+ - Video Game Development Winners of the Emmy Awards->

Submitted by
Wowzer
Wowzer writes "Groundbreaking video game developers were honored at the 59th Annual Technology and Engineering Emmy Awards during CES 2008 in Las Vegas. From the article: "Peripheral Development and Technological Impact of Video Game Controllers: Nintendo, for the D-pad innovation on the NES/Famicon controller; Sony Computer Entertainment America, for the Dual Shock Analog Controller. — Development of 3D Software Engines: John Carmack; id Software.""
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Social Networks

+ - SecondLife bans in-world banks; Residents rejoice->

Submitted by GuruBuckaroo
GuruBuckaroo (833982) writes "Virtual Ponzi schemes — pardon, "Banks" — have finally been given the boot by the policymakers at Linden Lab's Second Life. According to the company's latest blog post:

"As of January 22, 2008, it will be prohibited to offer interest or any direct return on an investment (whether in L$ or other currency) from any object, such as an ATM, located in Second Life, without proof of an applicable government registration statement or financial institution charter. We're implementing this policy after reviewing Resident complaints, banking activities, and the law, and we're doing it to protect our Residents and the integrity of our economy.""

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The Courts

+ - BayTSP CEO in Singapore to testify on Anime D/Ling

Submitted by Xedo66
Xedo66 (666) writes "Anime distributor Odex has roped in a Silicon Valley-based former hacker to appeal against a court's decision. Last Thursday, Odex failed in its bid to force Pacific Internet (PacNet) to hand over the data of suspected illegal downloaders, whom Odex had tracked down with the help of Internet investigation firm BayTSP.

BayTSP's chief executive officer Mark Ishikawa, a former hacker, will arrive in Singapore later this week to help Odex prepare its appeal, according to his publicist Jim Graham.

On 23 August 2007, Odex lost its suit against Internet Service Provider Pacific Internet to reveal 1,000 of its subscribers' information. District Judge Ernest Lau ruled that Odex has failed to meet a number of requirements for the release of such information, as the company was exclusive licensee for only one anime title and its provided evidence found to be unsatisfactory. It was also revealed that another ISP, SingNet has put up virtually no resistance and gave consent in revealing subscribers' information to Odex. Several downloaders subsequently received letters of legal threat from Odex and had to pay out-of-court settlements for at least S$3,000 (US$2,000) per person, the youngest person being only 9 years old."

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